Let’s be honest, most of us have no idea what cholesterol is. Instead, all we know is that it relates to our health and that it’s important to find ways to lower your cholesterol to maintain a healthy lifestyle
Fortunately, you don’t need to know about the science behind it to keep your cholesterol in check. You just need to know how to improve your cholesterol and then have the discipline to follow through on those lifestyle changes. With that in mind, let’s forget about the science and just focus on these ways to lower your cholesterol.
Take a Walk
It may sound simple, but one of the best ways to lower your cholesterol is to take a walk. Of course, ideally, you’ll get into the habit of taking a walk every day and slowly working your way toward more vigorous forms of exercise. Most health experts recommend that adults get at least two and a half hours of moderate exercise or 75 minutes of more rigorous exercise every week.
That means the bare minimum should be two and a half hours of walking every week. Following that kind of regimen will help to improve your cholesterol levels. It’s also important to avoid sedentary positions for long periods of time. Even if your job involves sitting at a desk all day, do your best to stand up and walk a little bit every hour or so.
Stop Smoking and Drinking
If you’re serious about finding out how to improve your cholesterol, say goodbye to cigarettes and alcohol forever. Needless to say, this would be a radical lifestyle change that not everybody can follow. Naturally, not smoking is far more important than not drinking. Within months of quitting smoking, the adverse health effects of your bad habit will start to reverse themselves, meaning your cholesterol will improve and your risk of heart disease will start to decline.
In terms of alcohol, the liver is important when it comes to removing cholesterol from your bloodstream. But your liver can’t always do that effectively if there’s a fatty buildup from heavy alcohol use. Even if you can’t stop drinking altogether, do your best to cut down and give yourself extended periods when you don’t drink at all.
Eat Healthier Snacks
It’s hard for anybody to give up snacking. After all, we’re only human. The key is to snack in a healthy way and cut down on the snack foods that are bad for your cholesterol levels. Unfortunately, this means chocolate, pastries, hard cheese, and foods that are high in butter and cream. You can make these foods occasional treats but not everyday snacks.
The next time to stock up on snack foods, stick to fruits, vegetables, walnuts, and other foods you know to be low in fat and cholesterol.
Pass on Red Meat
Again, this will be difficult for some people, but staying away from red meat is important if you want to keep your cholesterol in check. Most forms of red meat are high in saturated fats, which means they might taste good but they won’t do your cholesterol any favors.
Most types of fish are low in saturated fats and good for your cholesterol levels, among other health benefits. Skinless chicken and skinless turkey are also good options if you’re not a fan of eating fish every night. If it helps, eating red meat in moderation won’t be the end of the world. However, you should also try to get in the habit of eating a vegetarian dinner at least once per week.
Change the Way You Cook
In addition to changing the foods you eat, maintaining low cholesterol levels also means changing the way you cook. For instance, try to bake, broil, grill, and boil your food as opposed to frying everything. You can also make an effort to trim the fat off your meat, even if you have to sacrifice some of the taste.
Meanwhile, the oils you use can play a big role in your cholesterol levels. Rather than using butter, margin, or lard, even if they make everything taste better, cook with olive oil or sunflower oil. Doing so will be good for your heart health and may even add some new and interesting flavors to your food.